Movement on the wellness front

Chico school district takes steps toward more healthful meals

Changes are underway and more are possible. That’s the message that came out of the Jan. 28 meeting of the CUSD Wellness Committee held at Chico Junior High School. About two dozen people attended, including members of Advocates for Healthy School Communities, a group working to improve the quality of school meals (see “Local schools, local food,” CN&R Newslines, Jan. 22).

Interim Director of Nutrition Services Tanya Harter gave a presentation on the district’s meal offerings, nutritional guidelines and severe budget constraints. California Department of Education representative Marsha Miller and CUSD Business Services Director Scott Jones also gave short talks.

Highlights included the announcement that soft drinks are no longer available at local schools except the high schools, where they will be phased out by the end of the school year. Also, Harter said that the district has changed cereal vendors, and over the next month “we will see a change” to whole-grain, unsweetened cereal. Additionally, she is recommending that recess at each school be changed to before lunch instead of after lunch.

For more from Harter on this issue, see Letters.